Judges Appointment: PPP decides to give judiciary 'tough time'
26 August, 2013
ISLAMABAD: After serious questions being raised by some quarters of the judiciary, the Pakistan People's Party has decided to give 'tough time' to the superior judiciary regarding appointment of judges as the Senate is set to hold debate on Monday (today) on the matter.
It has been learnt that PML-N's government is also backing the PPP for making the Parliamentary Committee on Judges' Appointments more effective regarding the appointment of superior courts judges.
One member of the parliamentary committee Senator Rafiq Rajwana while talking to our sources told that the parliamentary committee had formed a sub committee of three parliamentarians, who are also practicing lawyers, for making the committee more effective in appointment of superior courts judges.
Regarding the members of sub-committee, Rafiq Rajwana also told that former law minister Farooq H Naek, Chaudhry Bashir Wirk and he himself were the members of that committee, which would examine how the role of parliamentary committee on judges appointments could be more effective as they were feeling that the role of Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP) especially judiciary had been remained dominant on the matter after the insertion of 19th amendment in the Constitution.
PML-N senator believed that the discussion would be helpful for the newly formed sub- committee for making the role of parliament more effective in superior courts judges' appointments.
Likewise, PPP senator Farhatullah Babar told that superior courts had ended the role of parliamentary committee in the process of judges' appointments. He also endorsed the superior bars demands about the amendments in JCP rules 2010.
It is be noted that superior bars have already expressed dissatisfaction over the procedure regarding appointment of superior court judges and decided to consult the government and opposition to make more effective the Parliamentary Committee on Judges' Appointment.
Talking to our sources, Vice Chairman Pakistan Bar Council Qalb-i- Hassan contended that the committee was becoming ineffective as compared to the Judicial Commission of Pakistan (JCP), adding that the latter remained dominant in the process of appointments. If the committee rejects the JAC's proposed names, the superior courts can set aside as it has been done in the past, he added.
He also told that superior bars had expressed reservations over powers of the JCP chairman (the chief justice of Pakistan) and sought transfer of chairman's powers regarding the appointment of judges of the superior courts to the commission.
Lawyers are demanding that the JCP's rules be amended immediately. They have already submitted a draft of the proposed amendments to rules 2, 3, 6 and 8 of the JCP about the appointment of judges, he added.
In their proposed amendments, the lawyers unanimously demanded that the JCP secretary be nominated by the commission. Currently, the JCP chairman (CJP) appoints the secretary of the commission and presently the Supreme Court registrar, Dr Faqir Hussain, holds the post.
Lawyers have also recommended that the JCP's committee on any matter should not be constituted by the chairman alone, but by the entire commission.
Regarding relaxation of rules, the apex body of lawyers unanimously suggested that the whole commission and not just the chairman should have the authority to relax strict application of the rules in public interest. The PBC recommended that before initiating and sending proposed names of the judges to the commission, the superior bars' representatives in the JCP should be consulted and this consultation should be meaningful.
Later, the lawyers decided not to nominate a new representative until their grievances were resolved regarding the appointment of judges. On April 20, the PBC nominated Muhammad Yaseen Azad as its representative after a five-month boycott of the commission's proceedings.